Last year was the first year I completed a room all at once. For so long, I bought into the lie that a yellow Target sticker meant I needed to own it which ultimate left me with a collection of mismatched home decor that left me feeling overwhelmed and uninspired. When we purchased our home in 2016, I prayed over every space in our house, asking God to transform our house into a home others could come in and feel His presence while connecting with one another. In order to achieve this goal, I have come to realize I need to clear the clutter and simplify my space to welcome guests with intention.
Transitional Dining Room Design
For a while now, I have loved transitional design, interior design that combines traditional and modern elements, because the calming neutral tones encourage relaxation and connection. After completing our Living Room Refresh: Phase 1 last year, I set out to take each room of our house and simplify it to its bare walls and transform the space in completion using transitional design elements. If you’re just joining me on this journey, I’m currently redesigning my dining room! And today, I’m sharing my Transitional Dining Room Design Board! Let’s do this!
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Decision Making is NOT my Jam
Hello, I’m Jenna, and I hate making decisions. I believe my struggle with decision making stems from being an Enneagram 9 and the desire to please everyone. Typically, I turn to Shannon to help me make decisions as big as life changes to as small as which outfit I should purchase. Not much has changed since we were young children. My big sister has always been someone to look up to. Shan made straight A’s and never left the house without looking put together. I always admired that about her and I still do. It wasn’t until this last year when I began diving into mindset work to break false beliefs I’ve been told or have been telling myself for so long, that I realized I am capable of making decisions. Also, I have great instincts, a strong eye for design, and a knack to feel when something is off.
With that said, as I began designing this transitional dining room design board, I naturally picked out two of everything because I struggled with deciding on one element for each category.
If you’re like me and you question the decisions you’re making in design, your life, your relationships, etc., let me be the one to encourage you to think back to one good decision you made in the past and channel your energy from that. Ask yourself, “Have I made good decisions in the past?” If so, then why not now? You are capable of trusting your intuition, and honestly, just do what brings you joy! If gold isn’t your favorite, go for the black and enjoy every bit of it.
All that to say, I made decisions and finalized my dining room design board!
Transitional Dining Room Design Board
Like I said before, when designing my dining room, I selected two of everything. For the dining room table, it was a toss up between a long natural wood table vs. a dark large round dining room table. I even purchased two chandeliers, two sideboards, and questioned the color of the frames. Even designers need help narrowing down design decisions! It’s okay!
Every time I questioned something, I naturally texted Shannon, to which she’d reply, “Put it in your design board.” As soon as I did, I was able to make a final decision and move on.
Creating a design board is not difficult. If you’re not tech savvy, print out images from Pinterest or the product’s description and paste each image on a poster board. If you prefer the Digital route, I highly recommend using Canva, a design website we use to create all of our digital graphics, and there’s no design experience needed. Drag, drop and have the freedom to swap colors and fonts to your liking! I personally like using Photoshop. I used Photoshop all throughout college in my design courses and I still have fun working in the program!
The Foundation – Dining Room Area Rug
I fell in love with Loloi Rugs when I redesigned my living room. I randomly found a Loloi II Hathaway rug at a local home store and instantly fell in love. This line of area rugs are power-loomed and made of polyester which is soft to the touch while being durable and easy to clean. In a home full of three busy children (and then some) and a dog, these elements are all very important to me when purchasing an area rug. I knew without a doubt in my mind I would choose a Loloi Rug for our dining room as well.
We visit Loloi’s showroom when we traveled to Atlanta and I felt as though I was meeting a celebrity. Each rug left me feeling inspired! Ultimately, I chose this area rug from Loloi II Skye Collection for our dining room. The rich gray tones and pops of apricot give the perfect balance of the two emotions I want to portray in the space: transition and warmth.
Softening the Space – Window Treatments
If I could change anything in our home, I’d design wall to wall – ceiling to floor windows. Natural light has always been my go-to for uplifting my mood and for motivation on design days. While I do not have wall to wall windows, I must admit our windows are larger than the average.
As for the curtains, Shannon found a beautiful faux linen set on Amazon. I loved them so much, I had her order me a pair as well!
Setting the Mood – Lighting
“But you just purchased your chandelier!” a friend recently told me and I can’t help but laugh. If you’ve been following us for a while now, you know I love changing up my spaces. Our current chandelier is less than a year old but again, I purchased that without a full scope of the direction I was heading in the dining room. It was one of those “too good to pass up” kind of decisions and now I am on a mission to curate a cohesive space that is timeless.
We chose this linear brass chandelier because it is timeless, clean and sophisticated. Searching for the perfect lighting can feel overwhelming. I knew I wanted a simple piece, whether it was a large pendant, dome or linear, to create a statement and compliment our dining room table. This chandelier feels sophisticated and it’s affordable!
Adding Depth – The Shelving and Sideboard
In previous years, I decorated our dining room with many furniture pieces that were gifted to me. At one point we had a large dining room table, a vintage desk and a hutch. While I loved how full the room felt, it did feel a little too closed in for my liking. As I removed the large pieces and simplified the space, I still felt as though something was missing. Knowing this, I planned to source a sideboard to display all of our entertaining essentials and to serve as a buffet when hosting larger gatherings.
This oak scalloped two-door sideboard is part of the Threshold designed with Studio McGee collection at Target. I plan to display a framed piece of artwork and pair it with a marble cutting board and stoneware to accentuate the other design elements in the room for a completed look.
I am keeping the size of this cabinet in mind, as it is a tad smaller than I originally planned for the space. I purchased this Natural Woven Console as a backup.
I will pair two natural wood floating shelves above the sideboard to display candles and other entertaining essentials for easy access and to easily serve my guests.
When you walk through our front door, our dining room greets you on your left. There is a large wall with one window behind the dining room table and your eyes are immediately drawn to it. I will be installing bead board on the main wall to create an accent piece and design element that softens the space and adds some interest. We will be framing out the windows and painting everything Swiss Coffee.
Bringing Life to the Space – The Greenery
Mimi’s house has always been an inspiration to me over the years. While we have different design aesthetics, her ability to curate a house to feel like a home is definitely a skill she encompasses. One key element I’ve noticed is how she strategically uses plants and greenery throughout her home. Plants bring a breath of fresh air to a space.
My love for nature has always encouraged me to bring the outside in through the use of faux plants and greenery. I opted for this Olive Tree to display in the corner of our dining room to add life and warmth to the space. It is simple and muted and compliments the overall transitional dining room design I’m aiming to achieve.
Creating Visual Interest – The Artwork
My love for art began at a young age. I am mostly drawn to pieces with abstract elements, portraits, sketches, line drawings, vintage landscapes and a few in between. Art displayed in a home creates visual interest and sets the tone for the space. Pops of color livens a space where soft vintage pieces calls the mind to unwind. I personally love the emotion I feel through each piece of art and how it can transform a space.
For our dining room, I choose a painted moody landscape and a vintage flower still-life to compliment the rich tones found within the area rug and our dining room table. For a cohesive yet simplified look, I’m pairing two simple sketches and framing the four pieces of artwork in large black matted frames for a modern touch. For a true transitional design, always opt for vintage artwork paired with modern frames. They truly balance one other.
Surprise Element – The Table & Chairs
If you look at my Pinterest Board, you’d be surprised to not find a large, natural wood dining room table in my final transitional dining room design board. Me too! For this design, I challenged myself to think outside the box and create something new and something you don’t see everyday.
This large round charcoal dining room table is the perfect element to curate a space for connection. There’s something about a round dining room table that brings everyone together, with no end in sight.
“The circle is a universal symbol with extensive meaning. It represents the notions of totality, wholeness, original perfection, the Self, the infinite, eternity, timelessness, all cyclic movement, God (‘God is a circle whose centre is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere’)- Umich
What better than a round dining room table to symbolize wholeness and bring unity within relationships to cultivate deeper connections.
I will be pairing the dining room table with these natural wood woven wishbone chairs to tie all the natural wood elements together and complete the space.
All in all, while I’m excited to unpack all the shipping boxes and complete the space, I’m more excited to open my door to loved ones and witness the connection this space provides them. Whether its a hot cup of coffee with a friend while our little ones play, a date night at home with Nick or we’re hosting neighbors from down the street, I’m excited to curate a space they feel welcome to come as they are. A space they long to come, unwind and connect.
Are you enjoying my design journey? If so, be sure to check out Shannon’s dining room design as well! While we are striving for similar aesthetics, the final looks will be completely different!